Year: 2015

Scotland’s Labour party dominance and UK vote tumult

Scotland’s Labour party leader Jim Murphy [Reuters] Glasgow, Scotland – There is an old adage that in Glasgow, Labour votes are weighed not counted, such is the party’s historical dominance of Scotland’s largest city. Labour has controlled Glasgow city council for all but five of the last 63 years. All seven Glasgow MPs were elected […]

UK elections and the shift from ‘tribal’ politics

The historic multi-party debates in the UK have rekindled political diversity [Reuters] Glasgow, UK – Some seven million viewers across Britain tuned into the first, and only, televised multi-party debate ahead of May’s general election. What they saw on April 2 was a stark illustration of how much UK politics has changed in recent years. Conservative […]

Glasgow smiles: how the city halved its murders by ‘caring people into change’

In a squat redbrick community hall in the shadow of a pair of vertiginous north Glasgow tower blocks, half a dozen men sit on plastic chairs around a sturdy wooden table. The carpet is threadbare, the overhead lights harsh. Through shatterproof glass windows, dusk has turned to night. “I can’t get a job anywhere, not with […]

Election Posters Banned Across Scotland

Competing “yes” banners and “no thanks” posters were among the most colourful features of the referendum campaign, but as May’s general election hoves into view there will be less political posters than ever on Scotland’s streets. Experts fear that the lack of posters could depress turnout. Just a handful of Scottish councils permit candidates and […]

UK communists and the fall of the Berlin Wall

Once a hotbed of left-wing agitation, socialists in Cowdenbeath still mourn the beginning of the end of communism. A November 1989 image shows people celebrating the opening of the border between East and West Germany [EPA] Cowdenbeath, Scotland – Twenty-five years ago the heavy thud of the Berlin Wall falling resonated around the world. The […]

Living in the Shadows of Glasgow’s High Rise Ghettos Before They Get Blown Up

Early last April, a letter arrived at Betty Caw’s neat, pebbledash terrace house directly opposite Glasgow’s towering Red Road flats. “The regeneration of North Glasgow is continuing at great pace and with that in mind I have some exciting news,” began a single page on council headed paper signed by Gordon Matheson, leader of Glasgow […]

Spain’s Catalans set to vote on independence

Catalans expected to turn out in droves on Sunday for what is now a ‘symbolic’ independence referendum. Support for independence has risen dramatically in what is seen as an attempt to curb Catalan power [Reuters] Barcelona, Spain – Sleep has been hard to come by in Barcelona this week – but not on account of […]

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